When we talk about thanksgiving, it’s not just about saying thank you; it’s also about taking actions. It means having a grateful heart attitude that must be followed by concrete and tangible actions.

To better understand this, I recall the French oral exams in secondary schools and orientation cycles. We were asked to conjugate the verb “sortir” (to go out) with an action. A student conjugated the verb “sortir” with action by saying, “je sors” (I go out), and at that moment, he walked out of the room, and the jury applauded him.

Many say thank you superficially. That’s why we need to stop and remember the moments we have gone through. It starts with an attitude of courtesy, gratitude, and actions to express this gratitude, meaning that I fully acknowledge that without God in my story, I cease to exist.

The heart attitude that leads us to thanksgiving is the act of remembering what God has done. Do not easily forget all the things God has done; enumerating them before Him to say thank you is a way of expressing your gratitude towards Him.

Let’s delve into our memory to remember that God has already done many things. Some only remember what they lack in this specific month, forgetting that in previous months, God provided for that. If we are to be grateful to Him, we must remind Him of what He had already done for us in the previous months so that what we are experiencing this month will make way for God’s miracles.

God does not expect us to raise our hands or kneel, but what He expects is that in our hearts, we have the attitude that corresponds to our action.

  • God knows us, and we talk too much about Him.

How can you claim to love God whom you do not see if you do not love your brother whom you see? Sometimes we say things we cannot prove. That’s why before giving thanks to Him, God asks us to show first that we can do it to those who are like us.

If we cannot say thank you to God for the wife we have, the husband we have, and even for our children, how can we be able to say thank you to God for the anointing, His presence, His promises that we do not see? Also, if we cannot say thank you to our wife, our husband, our children whom we see, how can we be able to say thank you to God whom we do not see?

Let’s first be grateful for the physical people we have and towards these people before we can recognize the benefits of the invisible God.

  • Saying thank you to a person is a favor.

By thanking those around you, your brothers and sisters will greatly help you to say “Matondo” to God. You have to believe in someone for their potential and not for their pockets. When you receive something from someone, just say thank you. If you never know how to say thank you for what you receive from a man, how can you say thank you to God whom you do not see?

Are you capable of saying thank you to your stepmother who was tough on you but helped you in her toughness to do household chores so well that you became a good cook in your own home?

Not only those who gave you something have done good to you; even those who were tough on you have developed in you characters that now serve you. All the more reason to say “Matondo” thank you in Lingala.

Be glad that today you have people challenging you on the practicability of thanksgiving actions.

To our children, let’s say thank you for what they represent, and let’s encourage them to do better because they are a blessing to us. We don’t need to threaten them for them to understand because sometimes all they need is just appreciation that comes from our thanksgiving actions.

Saying thank you to your colleague because he is the best collaborator you’ve ever had does not diminish you. Sometimes we teach things that we do not live. Saying thank you to someone who has been exceptionally valuable by preparing something for them.

I remember the day I experienced the miracle of having 2 vehicles… When that happened, I remembered how my brothers and I had the same shoe size 42 as our father when we grew up. This led me to tell my wife that we should do a favor for my father by giving him one of these vehicles. And every time I reach a higher level as a father, I will say thank you to my father.

Let’s not wait to have a lot to give! Give what you can give but present it well to touch the hearts of the people to whom you want to express your gratitude. For everything they represent, they deserve to hear “Matondo.”

Take this opportunity from this book to review the people who have contributed to building the man or woman you are today and go to them to give a present that says “thank you.” This will be your thanksgiving action.

This text is an excerpt from the book “MATONDO: Living through Thanksgiving” written by Authors Arlette ManegabeAthom’s MbumaDavid KajisuFifi Bilolo TunasiGrâce TshiashalaMichael TetteyPasteur Lévi Kongolo KazadiSissi BogoliTracien Boma.

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